Monday, September 17, 2012

Tara: The room of 9 Chairs

                                Tara Part: The Room of 9 Chairs
                                        By Mark William Darus



          Rigid, chiseled facial features greet Tara in the mirror with the mildew covered shower curtain behind her. Her nose accustomed to the stench of a neglected cat-box, eyes no longer watering, stomach failing to respond with heaving motions.

       The shower emits steam, hissing with the sounds of splashing water.

        Lowering her head she brushes her long, this week, blond hair, eyes locking on the battery of medications before her on the countertop. Meds to control her, but more often than not, failing her.

       Looking once again into the mirror, face loosening, she says, “Hey Kara, how we doing this fine morn?” Her voice happy and optimistic.

      “Just glorious, and you, Tara?” a much lower toned voice says back.

       “Is the water warm enough, Cara?

        “Yes, Tara, I believe it is,”

        “Shall we shower now?”

         “Absolutely, we must, Cara.”

         As Tara, Kara and  Cara enter the shower warm water covers them with exquisite sensations as it journeys down a well toned body. Strawberry Purity Shampoo mix with the warm water, its steam, pleasantly fragrant, filling the tiny bathroom, obscuring the mirror across from it.

         Elsewhere, a toady looking man dons a lab coat, hair ruffled from a lack of combing, wearing mismatched socks, leaves his home for a meeting with her. As he enters his blue BMW, he turns on the radio. Greeted with a song by Creed, “One, Oh one. The only was is one…” its radio blasts from the Blaupunkt sound system.


        Exiting the shower, Tara , Cara, Kara meet Ebony. They begin to dry themselves and Ebony gets very agitated.

       “What the fuck! Fine, don’t ask me!” a husky voiced female sporting a Tommy shirt and pink short-shorts yells at them.

        “Damn, Cara, Didn’t we chuck her last week?” Tara words displaying concern.

        “Yeah we did! We got rid of her by the Great Fountain last Tuesday. We had rocky road ice cream right after it.” Cara adds with confidence.

       “Guess she came back, didn’t she?” Kara emotionlessly states.

        Shaking a full head of wet clean hair while trying to dry it with green towel, “Guess we failed again…”

         As all three of them get dressed, walking into the living room, Phil is staring at them with crying eyes. “How can you do this to me? Forget me? I’ve known you for over 9 years,” Wearing a Journey jersey and blue corduroys, he looks utterly dumbfounded.

       Tara, Cara and Ebony look nearly horrified at his presence before them.

       “Didn’t we-”

       “Shit, it didn’t hold,” Cara cuts Tara off in mid-sentence.


        “DAMN IT!” the four  contrasting females yell with perfect harmony.

          “Let’s get dressed already, Tara,” a calmer Cara speaks.

         Leaving their dwelling, they walk to their group session of never-ending mental probing.

        Not far from the five of them, Dr. Petifield Grimly stops for coffee at the Comfortably Buzzed Coffee shop. A local thrash-metal band plays an over powered version of Higher Ground highly distorted from the JBL‘s in the poorly decorated shop. Greeted by a goth-chick with at least 8 exposed body piercings, “Super Mocha Expresso Deluxe, doc?”

       “Please. Wait, make it two of them.” Speaking with a voice that never left puberty behind, the 48 year old man looks at her as he always wonders: ‘what else does she have pierced?’

      He pays and generously tips her.

       “You got a rough one today, eh, doc?” she asks with a sarcastic edge.

       “You have no idea.”


         Happily, Tara speaks to the haggard looking receptionist safely planted behind thick glass. “We’re here for doctor Grimly. We have a 9 o’clock.”

         “Very good, I’ll the doctor know you are in.” Yawning, she tiredly presses a button on her phone. “Your niner is in, doctor, “

         “Okay, I’ll be right out.” His voice, regardless of how many strong coffees consumed, sounds nearly comatose and completely lifeless.


         Buzzing sound ensues as a door is opened slowly.

         Faking a smile, Grimly looks to the waiting area. “And how are we today?

        Surmising the four others around her, Tara says, “Not so good doc.”

         “Well, let’s all talk about it, shall we.”

          Brightly lit corridor splashing fluorescents on them from dispersed overhead neon coverings. Between many office doors, the walls display photos and paintings of gentle clouds and landscapes of green pastures of vibrant flowers.

         Reaching a large room with nine chairs in a circle, they sit.

          “How are all of you?”

          “Well, Doctor, Ebony and Phil are back, as you can see,” Tara’s voice is steady, though perturbed at the same time. Uneasily, she and others plants themselves on the chairs.

          “I see, “ doctor Grimly agrees judging by the look on Tara's  face. “Sorry to hear this. Did anything good happen last weekend?”

         “I guess so. I broke it off with Bill.”

          “Good! That relationship was not good for you, Tara. Where did you break it off with him and what did he say to you?”

          Sadness crossing her face as she looked down at the floor, she quietly tells him, “by the Great Fountain. He took it pretty hard, he cried at me. It was horrible! He had his Iron Maiden tee on and his tears landed on his grey sweat pants.

           Looking up, Cara nodded at Grimly, saying with low, confident tone, “he needed to be gone.”

          “I agree, Cara. He did need to be gone from Tara and you.”

          "How can you exclude me from this thought, doctor?" Kara asks loudly though totally lacking an emotional presence.

          “But doc, he said he would return! We can’t handle this. Christ, Ebony and Phil returned. You see this, don’t you?” Cara had a desperate expression of anguish in both her posture and face.

          Turning her head to the left, face away from Grimly, the voice of Tara fills the room.

       “I think he made me pregnant!”

         Cara, Phil, Kara  and Ebony nod their heads with this knowledge. Kick off one, another emerges.

         Sighing, doctor Grimly looks at Tara.

         Besides himself, Tara is the only other person in this room of nine chairs.

                             Mark William Darus 09172012



Authors Note: Tara Part was a story I started well over 17 years ago. I came to know a woman that suffered, and I do mean suffered, from multiple personalities. I posted poetry and stories about this womans life and the changes I witnessed back on the pre-World Wide Web, when all we had was BBS systems to reach one another in cyberspace.

Tara Part is a fictitious name. It has been a while since I wrote about Tara. Writing about her always seemed painful to me. A few of her personalities loved me and they shared this with me. A few didn’t, they made this known, and I split when she happened on an abuser she later married.

To the real-life Tara, I am sorry I was not stronger back when…

Thanks to Dave T for always asking about Tara.